Choosing a Translator or a Translation Company
A simple commercial letter can be translated by most translators, but who are you going to entrust with your Technical Manuals, your Contracts, your Advertising Brochures, and your Catalogs? After all the care, time and quality that you put into producing those documents, it makes sense to choose very good translation professionals to translate them into other languages. Your company's image in other countries is totally dependent on the quality and accuracy of the documentation that your clients can read there. You should not cut corners, or you image will suffer severely.
Of course there are big names in the field of Translation Companies. Some companies are large and well known, but do you want to pay their top prices? In fact they have few translators (or none) in their offices, and sub-contract most of their jobs to smaller and more specialized companies like ours, or to individual freelancers.
The other peril is giving the translation to a friend of James, the accountant, who speaks great French because he studied sales for one year in Paris… Or to his cousin in Marseilles (who happens to be an unemployed car salesman…). Please use your common sense and give your translation jobs only to qualified professional translators, and if you cannot check their qualifications and proficiency, choose a good Translation Company that will take that responsibility off your shoulders. The savings from cutting corners will probably come back to haunt you a few months later… In fact would you select a surgeon, a sales professional, an accountant on price alone? Or on the recommendation of your next door neighbor?
Price versus Quality
A high quality professional job cannot be "cheap", but if you compare the cost of a good translation to the other costs of producing your good products and/or services, you will realize that the translation costs represent only a small percentage of the whole cost. It is not worth trying to extract a savings from your translation costs if the quality may be compromised.Saving a few dollars here can kill a large sale or devastate an entire export drive.